Burned-out family says thank you to firefighters

Photo by Tereasa Nims. Allen Park firefighters enjoyed a special meal Dec. 4 when family members from a house that burned Nov. 16 brought them lunch. The family is living in a rented house while their house is repaired. The family brought the firefighters Coney Island hot dogs, wings, bread and salad from Leo's Coney Island and cupcakes.

Photo by Tereasa Nims. Allen Park firefighters enjoyed a special meal Dec. 4 when family members from a house that burned Nov. 16 brought them lunch. The family is living in a rented house while their house is repaired. The family brought the firefighters Coney Island hot dogs, wings, bread and salad from Leo’s Coney Island and cupcakes.

By Tereasa Nims
Sunday Times Newspapers

ALLEN PARK – A family took time last Friday to recognize the firefighters who did all they could to save their home Nov. 16, when an electrical malfunction caused a fire.

Vickie and Stephen Spiceland and their family brought the firefighters lunch Dec. 4. The menu was complete with wings, Coney Island hot dogs, salad and bread from Leo’s Coney Island.

“And there were cupcakes,” Fire Chief Douglas LaFond said.

“We’ve had people do things like this for us before, but thank-yous are few and far between,” LaFond said. “They are a wonderful family. They have been so kind and gracious to us. It was great to have them visit.”

The Spicelands’ house in the 4600 block of Parkside Boulevard, is being repaired and they will rent a house in the neighborhood until they can move back in.

A firefighter was hospitalized overnight at Beaumont Hospital – Dearborn for carbon monoxide poisoning as a result from the fire. He was back to work the same week.

“I just wish we could have done more,” LaFond said shortly after the fire, despite arriving within a few minutes of the call.

The family wasn’t home at the time of the fire. Vickie and Stephen Spiceland had left earlier that morning for North Carolina and turned around and came home after hearing their house burned.

Their son, daughter and her husband and children also lived in the tri-level house. They were also not home at the time of the fire.

Neighbors spotted smoke and, knowing there were animals inside, forced open a door to get the animals out. Two dogs and a cat escaped through the door.

Another cat and dog retreated to the basement, where firefighters found them. The cat clung to the rescuing firefighter. The dog was a bit fatigued, but LaFond said the firefighter who rescued the dog gave the animal some oxygen and he perked right up.

The two dogs were found within 48 hours and it is unknown if the cat was found. Members of the Spiceland family were not available for comment as of press time.

(Tereasa Nims can be reached at dstreporter@gmail.com.)

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